Sometimes, change sneaks up on us

Published 11:57 pm Tuesday, October 1, 2013

From one day to another, the weather melts into fall, and I am glad to see the change.

Often, people run from change. It can be scary, but I think that by changing and learning, it’s the only way that each of us can grow.

From the time I was little, it was understood that as soon as I graduated from high school, I would head off to college. What I was supposed to do when I got there was never explained. I felt blindsided by the responsibility, but I slowly learned to adapt – to change.

When I learned that I was pregnant, I was petrified. I’d only held a baby once or twice, and had never – ever – been left alone with one. As soon as she was born, it was in no time that we were shipped out the door with a diaper bag and a prayer. To say that was a change would be an understatement.

When I did it again, things changed again – this time on the dramatic side, as it is oft to do when one is blessed with a special needs child. Again, I adapted, and I changed.

The third time was a charm, but as our family grew, so did our lives.

When children are in the home, sounds are louder; laughs are longer and lives are better. As the years continue, the way they change is amazing. I often wonder of the thoughts my mother had, watching me live my life. I wonder what her mother thought and her mother before, watching the same cycle in reverse.

I sometimes catch myself using a phrase or an act often repeated by mother as I was growing up, too.

The other day, I noticed something about myself I’d never noticed before – I’d changed. It didn’t really concern me that after a two-mile walk, I felt winded or that I noticed more gray at the top of my head. What got me were my fingernails.

I’d never given much thought to them. I’m not one for fingernail polish. I think the process is a waste of time because in a matter of hours, the tips are flaked off. A nail job for me means when they get too long, they get trimmed – which is exactly what I did Sunday. There was nothing fancy about the act. It was a change that needed to be done.

Driving on Tuesday, I noticed the curve and point and was immediately struck with the memory of my grandmother shaping her nails under the arbor of a giant oak tree – with same point and curve as mine.

I guess that sometimes when we feel like we’re changing so much, it’s because we really are – we’re changing into the ones we love the most, those that came before us.